Monday, August 31, 2009

Double Your Pleasure, Double Your Fun: More Chewing Gum

I feel compelled to respond to Allie's last post about Maurizio Savini with a discussion about the grandmommy of chewing gum sculptures, Nellie Mae Rowe. Considered a master of American Folk Art, Rowe's work has influenced artists and designers (check THIS out) since the 1970s, when she was first recognized as an artist.

Rowe, like many great outsider artists, was prolific, using every scrap of paper for drawings, and recycling any spare materials she could find into her artwork. Childless and a two-time widow, Rowe devoted herself almost completely to art-making after the death of her second husband. Every inch of her home and yard were filled with drawings, sculptures, and dolls. She is well known for her chewing gum sculptures like "Woman in Bonnet" pictured above, though there are surprisingly few images of these to be found on the web.

Want more Nellie? Read John MacGregor's "I See a World Within a World: I Dream but Am Awake." (No, it's not online, you have to go to the library or a bookstore for this one **gasp**)

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